New figures show true extent of immigration impact on housing demand. March 14, 2006

March 15, 2006

Attempts to play down the impact of immigration on UK housing have badly backfired following the publication today of household projection figures from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.

The figures show that immigrants will need 1.5 million homes in the period from 2003 to 2026 – that’s 65,000 each year – or nearly a third of all new households.

And even this is based on out dated figures.

A much quoted study last year by the Town and Country Planning Association said that the impact of immigration would be more modest - at 40,000 p.a. This is now shown to have been a serious underestimate.

‘The Government, and their supporters, have previously tried hard to play down the impact of immigration on housing because they know the major effect it is going to have on the quality of life in the UK, particularly in the South East where most migrants come to live,’ said Sir Andrew Green, Chairman of Migrationwatch.

‘These figures spell out the real situation and the problems that are going to be caused as the pressures increase on our roads, railways, public services, and the environment. It is ironic that the figures come on the very day that there is growing concern at the deteriorating water supply situation in the South East,’ he said.

In a paper on the figures (Read report) Migrationwatch says that even these very large figures do not give the full impact of immigration.

The figures used in today’s projections are based on the assumption of 130,000 international migrants each year. But this figure has since been revised to145,000 a year for the UK by the Government Actuary although this will not be used until a later revision.

Meanwhile the actual level of immigration for the UK in 2004 reached 223,000.

‘In their response to the Barker Report, the government have recently increased their house building target from 150,000 houses a year to 200,000 houses a year. The new figures demonstrate, if it were not for immigration, that increase would be completely unnecessary. This is a clear consequence of their policy of promoting large scale immigration which is causing huge concern throughout the country, ‘said Sir Andrew.

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